Collin Moulton's Chicken Stupid is one of the reasons I love writing comedy reviews. In talking with people about writing these pieces, I'm often surprised by the number of people who assume I love writing a negative review. They (falsely) think I take pleasure in expressing my lack of love for a project, but they couldn't be more wrong. As someone who genuinely loves the world of comedy, I sincerely want every album out there to be stellar. When a project falls short, it's not an exaggeration to say it hurts my heart.
One of the joys I get from writing reviews is (hopefully) introducing people to comics and comedy they might not otherwise have stumbled upon. Every time I get an email from someone expressing the purchased a comedy album based on what they read here, I feel sincerely honored to have helped spread the word.
Which brings me back to my original point. I went into Chicken Stupid not knowing what to expect and by the end of the first track I was already thrilled to be along for the ride. This CD is exactly what I hope every album will be when I sit down to listen: Comedy done just right.
There's not a thing I don't love about this project. Moulton has assembled every comedian's wish: one of the most-solid 45-minute sets you'll come across. There are 24 tracks on the project and I am more than pleased to say there isn't a weak spot in the bunch.
Moulton is off to a solid start with the tale of an inadvertent garage sale trip and the comedy consistently ramps up from there and never falters.
Although he could be classified as an observational comic, Moulton's perspective on life's details sets him apart from the pack. There are no stories of airline food, the differences between the sexes, or examples of how white guys can't dance. Moulton instead breathes life into a fresh laundry list of topics such as throwaway "I love you's" and trying to explain to a youngster why the post office and email continue to co-exist.
On "Fowl" Moulton brilliantly captures the only three words chickens are smart enough to learn and "Wife's Yawn Cry" is a hilarious take on the sun and how it affects certain bodily functions.
Moulton doesn't rely on overly-contrived premises to bring in the laughs. The reason his material resonates as strongly as it does is because what he is saying is the truth: If we all treated puppies the way we treat fish, PETA would go nuts. But for some reason these finicky animal activists are absolutely fine with the fact we can slam a fish against a rock and rip off it's lips. As Moulton points out, that's what they get for not blinking.
When he's not tackling the hard-hitting topics like racism (in pets), drugs (with Mom), and growing up with divorced parents, Moulton also finds humor in explaining why deaf people probably hate Muppets and the frightening secret lurking in Indiana Wal-Marts.
Despite the already-huge laughs in the first 23 tracks, Moulton manages to top himself on the final cut with a riotous bit on a handicapped police officer who meets his perfect foible. It's exactly the finale a solid piece of work like this deserves.
If you aren't familiar with Collin Moulton, he's done his part by recording a brilliant work of comedy and I've done what I can do by spreading the word. The rest is on you. There's a whole bunch of funny here waiting for you to discover. To sit by idly and let this one pass you by, quite frankly, is plain Chicken Stupid.